November 2020 election: Meet the candidates for Round Rock City Council Place 4

Frank Ortega and Will Peckham are running for Round Rock City Council Place 4.
Frank Ortega and Will Peckham are running for Round Rock City Council Place 4.

Frank Ortega and Will Peckham are running for Round Rock City Council Place 4.



ROUND ROCK



City Council Place 4










Frank Ortega



Occupation: real estate agent with AFAustin Team Powered by Keller Williams Realty


Experience: community and business leader, activist, and life-long Texan running for Round Rock City Council Place 4


Website: N/A




What would be your top priorities if you are elected?




FO: Transportation to ensure that we combat the heavy traffic that has continually increase within the city of Round Rock by looking at other form of transportation. Affordability so that teacher, firefighters, police officers, nurses, can afford to buy a home and live in Round Rock and not price anyone out of their homes. Gentrification, by making sure that small business are not priced out and by using smart growth that will benefit small business and [...]




What uniquely qualifies you for this position?




FO: That I will keep myself accountable, trusted, and the quality of being fair and impartial as your Round Rock City Council member.




How should Round Rock manage its growth?




FO: We can’t fight growth, instead we have to make sure that the growth in our city is equitable and doesn’t cause our generational residents and families to be taxed out of their homes and displaced, as well as low income residents. People who work here should be able to afford to live and work here. We need to help keep small businesses alive. We need to keep rent fair for local businesses. The community here [...]




What do you see as the greatest challenge facing the city, and how will you improve it?




FO: If we don’t carefully manage growth, we could drive out small businesses and push out homeowners. We need to work to balance both by using smart growth. Allow the citizens of Round Rock to have more of a say in the city and its direction. I think it’s important to hear as many viewpoints as possible in order to understand how situations affect everyone.












Will Peckham



Occupation: CEO, Round Rock Travel & Cruises


Experience: Texas A&M University BS; travel professional 25 years; Aggie 100 – Top Aggie owned Companies in World






What would be your top priorities if you are elected?




WP: Address our traffic congestion issues through our long-term road development plan. Keep our local economy strong by maintaining a favorable business climate and attracting new employers. Keep Round Rock one of the safest cities in America by providing law enforcement and our first responders with the resources they need.




What uniquely qualifies you for this position?




WP: In difficult times, experience matters. In addition to my time on City Council, I’ve also served on the boards of numerous civic organizations like the Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. As longtime Round Rock residents, my wife and I care about this community and want to do everything in my power to ensure that it remains one of the best places in the country to live, work, and raise a family.




How should Round Rock manage its growth?




WP: Effective management requires experienced leadership. As Round Rock continues to grow, its leaders must rise to meet new challenges and ensure that we are effectively serving the people of this community by maintaining a favorable business climate and keeping taxes low.




What do you see as the greatest challenge facing the city, and how will you improve it?




WP: The greatest challenge is adequately addressing the rapid growth our city continues to experience. A large part of that means having the experience necessary to sperate “wants” from “needs” in the city budget, and make sure we are spending our taxpayer dollars as smartly as possible. I believe we have been addressing this issue with our strategic goal retreats to accomplish yearly goals with still looking to the 5, 10 and 15 year horizon.






Editor's note: [...] indicates an answer was edited for length. Candidates were given specific word limits for each question.

By Taylor Jackson Buchanan
Taylor Buchanan joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2018 after completing a master of journalism degree from the University of Texas. She worked as the senior reporter for Community Impact's Southwest Austin edition and is now the editor for the company's flagship Round Rock/Pflugerville/Hutto edition.